Malaria is a potentially fatal parasitic disease caused by a parasite of the genus Plasmodium and transmitted by mosquitoes of the genus Anopheles.
Of the five species that infect humans, Plasmodium falciparum is the one that causes the most severe cases. This disease is still very present despite the progress made in the fight against malaria: around 3.3 billion people are exposed to malaria and in 2015, an estimated 212 million cases of malaria were affected. origin of 429,000 deaths, mainly in children under 5 years old. (WHO Report, 2016).
Nationally, great strides have been made in the fight against malaria. In 2014, Senegal recorded 265,624 cases and 500 deaths due to malaria, of which 175 are children (PNLP, 2015). These advances have led to a drop in the parasite prevalence in many localities of the country.
The epidemiology of malaria varies greatly from one geographic area to another. This heterogeneity is dependent on many factors including among others, the species of anopheles present, their vectorial capacity, and their distribution, the biological characteristics of the circulating parasite strains. An extremely important factor in this heterogeneity is represented by the immunity of individuals to malaria infection. The clinical response to infection is extremely variable, ranging from asymptomatic infection to the onset of a severe attack which can lead to death of the patient..
The Dielmo Ndiop project was set up in order to allow a better understanding of human / & nbsp; Plasmodium & nbsp; falciparum & nbsp; / vector interactions and the parameters allowing the establishment of a state of protection, which in the case of malaria sets in gradually and is the result of various factors linked to the individual, the type of transmission, and the parasite.
The specificity of the Dielmo project is the multidisciplinary approach that was adopted in order to better understand the different parameters involved in the complex framework of a parasitic infection characterized by different stages, in two different hosts (humans and mosquitoes)
The better knowledge of these factors aims to define new tools / strategies to fight and prevent infection.
The originality of the Dielmo and Ndiop programs lies in the quality and precision of the longitudinal data collected there. Longitudinal monitoring documenting the exposure and the individual protection status of people living in different endemic conditions, provides an explanatory approach with the control of different factors. This approach has made it possible to obtain benchmark results in the world of malaria.
In addition, over the years the various recommendations of the PNLP have been implemented progressively with the key to an evolution of the epidemiological profiles..
However, studies on malaria have also concerned other sites, including areas in the south-east of Senegal where the prevalence remains high compared to other areas of Senegal.
These studies have shown for the first time in Senegal, the existence of Plasmodium vivx.